Written by Kelsey Hopkinson, vice president of environmental, social and governance (ESG) at Colt
As we get ready to publish our second sustainability report, it’s a good opportunity to reflect on our ESG journey.
Anyone who has ever been involved in one knows that sustainability reports are painstaking work. It’s a comprehensive summary involving many stakeholders, not least because our approach is to make sure everything included is backed up by data and evidence.
It’s exciting though because our first report was published last year and set a baseline from which we could improve. Now, we can examine how well we are performing against our targets of reducing global carbon emissions and making Colt an inclusive place to work. It can be easy to get caught up in delivering the work but it’s a great time to reflect on our impact because making lasting change is what gets us out of bed in the morning!
I would like to thank everyone at Colt who has patiently contributed to the content. We still have a long way to go towards net zero and uniform equity, and we are by no means perfect, but the dedication of our employees, customers and partners means that we are heading in the right direction.
Before we publish our second report and share our progress towards our goals in full, I would like to share some of our highlights over the past year.
EcoVadis platinum rating
The world’s most trusted business sustainability ratings provider awarded us with its Platinum rating, commending our efforts towards sustainability, diversity and inclusion. We achieved this prestigious award after only being awarded a Gold rating for the first time the year before. Feedback from Ecovadis states that “Colt demonstrates an advanced management system on not only environmental issues but also labour and human rights, as well as ethics”. Our overall score increased mainly thanks to the addition of our sustainability report, which shows just how powerful this type of transparent reporting can be.
Trip to the South Pole
In March 2022, we supported polar explorer Robert Swan, OBE, and his 2041 Foundation on his trek across the south pole. Robert’s mission is to raise awareness about polar ice cap preservation, and we were proud to be invited as the expedition’s connectivity partner. Robert was joined by two of our Colties – our Sustainability Champions – who joined him on his trip to Antarctica and flew the flag for us while learning valuable insights from the intrepid environmentalist.
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
As a digital infrastructure company, we want to make extraordinary connections, but know that is only possible if we work with extraordinary people and our strength lies in our diversity.
Earlier in 2023, in ode to Global Accessibility Day, we hosted our own Global Accessibility Week. We invited employees to take part in workshops on digital inclusion as well as share our Optimising Accessibility roadmap: our five-year plan for making Colt an accessible and welcoming place to work. My colleague Rachel Collins, head of diversity, equity & inclusion, wrote a blog on the week which I recommend you read.
We also announced our UK Gender Pay Gap report in April where we successfully reduced the mean average pay gap between men and women from 13% (2021) to 9% (2022). We still have work to do, but progress like this is promising.
Stonewall’s Top Global Employers list is based on the charity’s Global Workplace Equality Index and we had the honour of being named on their list of top places to work for LGBTQ+ people. This was only possible because of the attention Colties across our network give to diversity and inclusion.
Despite all of these wins, behind the scenes, our Colties take part in charity walks, beach clean-ups, education programs, tree plantings, fundraising events and a glistening array of other corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives that I do not have space to mention here. Well done to all of you and keep up the good work.
Our 2023 report
Our second ESG report is due in the coming weeks. You can download our first report, read a statement from Colt’s CEO Keri Gilder or discover more about our goals by checking out the environmental sustainability page on our website.